School administrators are adept at collecting data, however too often they end up storing it–literally. Assessment and accountability movements are forcing schools to bring data out of drawers and onto the table. Some schools are taking it a step further by establishing schools data rooms where teachers can see student information in an organized and easy way.
Walls of color-coded sticky notes cover the walls of Gilliard Elementary School in Mobile, Alabama. The notes provide teachers with the information about what their students are learning on the math and reading standards as well, as they provide attendance and discipline records.
The goal is to assist teachers understand and address the needs of students before they get out of hand. If a student is not reaching his or their reading goals The teacher may suggest extra practice or work with students outside of school. If a student has an issue with their behavior the teacher may suggest counseling or even consider pulling that student from the classroom completely.
Baker’s plan is to have teachers recognize their students’ achievements by putting data in the forefront. Last spring, an homeless student was proud to announce that he had achieved his reading goal.
Make sure you follow FERPA guidelines and protect student privacy before you make the transition to a data room. This is especially true for a classroom data display, where sensitive details like counseling sessions and disciplinary actions could be shared accidentally.